Reviewers agree the Chef's Choice Diamond Hone Multi-Stage 110 offers an affordable alternative to pricier electric knife sharpeners. As the cheaper sibling to the Chef's Choice 120 Diamond Hone 3-Stage Professional Knife Sharpener (*Est. $135), the Chef's Choice 110 has three sets of diamond abrasive hones. Each hone slot sharpens at a different angle using magnetic guides (which experts say aren't as accurate as the spring guides found on the Chef's Choice 120). The Chef's Choice 110 is not designed for serrated knives like the 120 is, but it will sharpen other cutlery that fits comfortably in its slots, including some pocket and hunting knives (it won't sharpen scissors, however).
Unlike the Chef's Choice 120, the Chef's Choice 110 lacks a stropping stage and is less powerful, so sharpening takes a bit longer. To its advantage, the Chef's Choice 110 grinds less aggressively, meaning more strokes are required, but it removes metal at a slower rate than its speedier counterpart. Overall, it takes about twice as long to sharpen as the Chef's Choice 120. Still, experts warn that a little inattention can result in metal loss, and some users say their blades were scratched. Despite these drawbacks, most owners say the Chef's Choice 110 is sturdy and sharpens knives well and quickly, while one foodie magazine says it's a worthy choice for folks on a budget.
EGullet.org and Cook's Illustrated both review and recommend the Chef's Choice 110 knife sharpener. Owner reviews at Amazon.com and Cooking.com help reveal potential problems with long-term use.
1. Cook's Illustrated Magazine
Six electric knife sharpeners are compared in this head-to-head review. The Chef's Choice Professional Sharpening Station 130 is recommended over others, but the Chef's Choice 110 knife sharpener, which has fewer convenience features, is the runner-up.
Review: Electric Knife Sharpeners, Editors of Cook's Illustrated, Nov. 2006
In this detailed and lengthy tutorial, reviewer Chad Ward says he prefers manual sharpeners, though he does say that if you must have an electric sharpener, the Chef's Choice Diamond Hone Multi-Stage 110 is the one to buy. Ward warns that the Chef's Choice 110 knife sharpener can sometimes scratch blades.
Review: Knife Maintenance and Sharpening, Chad Ward, Aug. 13, 2003
Amazon.com has more than two dozen user reviews for the Chef's Choice 110, the majority of them positive. Only a few of the consumers who posted say they are disappointed with their purchase, mostly because the Chef's Choice 110 doesn't sharpen serrated knives and has a tendency to scratch blades.
Review: Chef's Choice 110 Professional Diamond Hone Sharpener, Contributors to Amazon.com
More than a dozen owners share their experiences with the Chef's Choice Diamond Hone Multi-Stage 110, and most say they would purchase it again. Their main criticism is that it takes some time to learn how to use it.
Review: 3-Stage Knife Sharpener by Chef's Choice, Contributors to Cooking.com